Movie Mars

Cecil B. Demented DVD

John Waters follows 1998's benevolently vulgar PECKER with this reactionary story of another young artist. Cecil (Stephen Dorff) is a radical young (and arguably insane) filmmaker whose motive for creating his art stems from a violent dissatisfaction with the pandering product produced by Hollywood. Cecil and his gang of film terrorists, the Sprocket Holes (who each has a tattoo of the name of their favorite director), kidnap spoiled superstar Honey Whitlock (Melanie Griffith) at the Baltimore premiere of her new film with the intention of forcing her to star in their antistudio opus RAVING BEAUTY. When Honey sees the street credibility she gets from her association with Cecil's terrorist antics, however, she no longer has to be forced to participate in the Sprocket Holes' outlandish schemes.

Less polished than some of his previous works (SERIAL MOM, CRY-BABY) but not nearly as crude as his reputation-earning early films, DEMENTED fits somewhere in the middle of Waters's ouevre. With an anything-goes spirit that one can rarely find outside of Waters's gleeful taboo-breaking creations, DEMENTED allows true lovers of cinema to live vicariously through characters who are desperately trying to remedy the sad state of the medium at the turn of the 21st century.
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